Robinson adjusts to United States golf

Josh+Robinson+follows+through+on+his+swing.+%28Photo+courtesy+of+Marquette+Athletics.%29

Josh Robinson follows through on his swing. (Photo courtesy of Marquette Athletics.)

Royal County Down Golf Club. The K Club. Royal Portrush Golf Club. These are just a few of the famous golf courses in Ireland, where Marquette University men’s golfer sophomore Josh Robinson is from.

Robinson is a native of Lisburn, Ireland” and has been a golf fan for most of his life.

“I started when I was three,” Robinson said. “My dad gave me plastic clubs.”

He would go to the driving range with these clubs to hit balls.

It was not until Robinson was 14-years-old that his passion for the game really began, and he was on a team representing his club.

“I played on the Fred Daly Team for Lisburn Golf Club,” Robinson said.

At age 15, Robinson started representing his province, Ulster to compete in future tournaments.

Deciding if one gets to be on the team depends on how well they perform at the tournaments over the summer and the province championship at the end of the summer. The top 10 players in their age group then would end up on the team.

Robinson went to two high schools in Ireland. First he attended Laurel Hill for five years and then Royal Belfast Academic Institution for two years. However, he did not play any golf until he got to RBAI.

When first joining RBAI’s team, Robinson did not know many people. His only friends and people that he knew were on the golf team.

“They helped me find my bearing and get settled into the school,” Robinson said.

In his first week in school, Robinson showed off his amazing golf skills. He managed to win a golf tournament for the RBAI thanks to the help of his teammates.

“This was a team victory,” Robinson said. “I couldn’t have done it without them.”

The victory helped the team qualify for the RISH Skills Tournament, the biggest tournament a high school team can qualify for in Ireland.

Robinson was captain of the team for a few tournaments when the original captain was unable to make it. To make things better, Robinson led the team to a win in the Winter Skills Tournament. This was the first tournament where he was the captain of the team.

Some people think that motivation in a win comes from the captain, but Robinson does not believe that. He thinks it also has to come from the team as a whole.

“You need to adapt certain qualities but the players need to believe they can win too,” Robinson said.

The captain Robinson saw while on the golf team a bit different than some captains you see in today’s sports world. Many captains give speeches before games/matches, but that is not what Robinson saw with the captain of the team.

“We would just regroup before we tee off and just say ‘we just need to do what we need to do,'” Robinson said.

When Robinson came to Marquette, he had to adapt to longer golf courses because the ones in Ireland are different.

“Back home it is all about accuracy and putting,” Robinson said.

Head coach Steve Bailey first saw Robinson at the RISH Skills Tournament at Royal Portrush Golf Club. The conditions and competition were tough and Robinson pushed through to the final 64 among 250 other golfers.

“He reminded me of a little bulldog,” Bailey said. “He is short in stature but he is tough with his ability to compete.”

Robinson’s team in Ireland had a captain, but here, the team here has no captain.

“Everyone is a captain,” Bailey said. “Everyone has their own responsibilities.”

While Robinson has plans to play golf, he also has plans to go into coaching. He said he would like to be an individual golf coach.

“My future goal would be to have my own golf academy,” Robinson said.

This story was written by Matthew Valente. He can be reached at matthew.valente@marquette.edu.